C O N F I D E N T I A L MUSCAT 001534
STATE FOR NEA, NEA/I, NEA/ARPI
E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/13/2015
TAGS: PGOV PREL IZ MU
SUBJECT: MGIZ02: DEMARCHE REQUEST ON IRAQI CONSTITUTION
REF: SECSTATE 188987
Classified By: Ambassador Richard L. Baltimore III.
Reason: 1.4 (b, d).
Â¶1. (C) The Ambassador spoke on October 13 with Minister
Responsible for Foreign Affairs Yusuf bin Alawi to deliver
reftel demarche encouraging Oman's public support for the
October 15 Iraqi constitutional referendum and the
compromises reached October 12.
Â¶2. (C) Bin Alawi hailed the compromise as a "good move" that
"demonstrates that the Iraqis are moving forward to
stability." The Minister opined that the fact that some Sunni
leaders agreed to the compromise and others did not is just a
tactic to gain leverage and should not deter the onward march
of democratic forces. He agreed wholeheartedly that there is
a need to encourage all parties to vote on October 15th and
undertook to make a public statement along those lines.
Â¶3. (C) The Minister's response was fully consistent with his
October 3 remarks to the Arab regional press in which he
stated "The Arab states are supporting the Iraqi government
in everything leading to its stability," and his call on all
Iraqis to work together in building a new Iraq based on
democratic principles. In addition, the September 26-27
convening in Muscat of the Oman-Iraq Joint Committee was the
first such meeting since the fall of Saddam, and the
highest-level Iraqi visit to Oman since late 2003. The Iraqi
delegation to those talks, headed by Iraq's Transport Under
Secretary Atta Nabeel Ouni, also included a substantial trade
delegation led by Iraqi Chamber of Commerce President Aboud